Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Zucchini Parmesan

As I mentioned recently, we've had quite the zucchini bounty this year. When we got back from some time out of town and I went to check the garden, I found a real-life zucchini version of James and the Giant Peach. Seriously, a kid and some bugs could live inside that monstrosity of a vegetable.


So, of course, I had to find a way to use up all that zucchini. This was especially challenging since it's at the top of Andy's "Forbidden Vegetable" list, right behind mushrooms. This task was made infinitely easier when he suggested out of the blue that he might give it a chance it if it was slathered in breading, cheese, and sauce, and so Zucchini Parmesan was born.

I had a hard time finding a recipe I liked online, so I wound up adapting a recipe for Eggplant Parmesan from Gourmet magazine. This was a huge deal for me, because even very recently I would have been either ordering takeout or finding the easiest Rachael Ray/Sandra Lee version to make. Actively choosing to make something from Gourmet was a huge milestone for me.

Zucchini Parmesan

Despite the milestone, though, I wasn't thrilled with the results for a couple of reasons. First, zucchini are not supposed to grow that big. The seeds and skin were incredibly tough to the point of inedibility (it's not a word, but you know what I mean), so that was irritating. Second, maybe I was a little too deliberate and methodical in my preparations (read: I like to space out sometimes when I'm cooking so it takes a bit longer), but the hours of work did not produce a stellar end result like I had hoped. I can't fault the recipe, though; it's for eggplant, not zucchini, and I had to make some guesses about how to adapt.

I'd recommend this recipe for use with eggplant, and just might revisit it when our backyard eggplants are ripe (almost there!). Otherwise, I'd say there's a good reason it's hard to find a zucchini parmesan recipe out there. The best thing to come out of this experience was that Andy actually enjoyed the zucchini, seemingly much more than I did. A step in the right direction!

For Gourmet's Eggplant Parmesan recipe, click here.


Anne said...

Hmm, sorry to hear you were disappointed. Do you think it would work better with more moderately sized zucchini, or do you think it's just better suited to eggplant all around?

I'm amassing good recipes for using up zucchini, too. I have a couple that I like, but I get rather bored with them, so I'm trying to branch out. I was thinking about trying zucchini parmesan.... maybe instead of the Gourmet one I'll try the Cook's Illustrated one that my mom likes so much for eggplant.

Truly Smitten said...

Hi Amy! thanks for sharing that book with me! I was really nervous that my bread wouldn't bake or it would turn out like a brick...whew! it was very satisfying

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry it didn't turn out well taste-wise because it sure does look delicious!

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